In October, 29,000 neuroscientists gathered in Chicago to discuss new research in their sprawling field at the Society for Neuroscience’s annual meeting. Amid mountains of abstracts on every conceivable aspect of brain science, there were a surprising number of studies about an unlikely subject: video games.
Satellites are built to endure decades in the most inhospitable conditions in the known universe. Paradoxically, engineers are now trying to figure out how to design them so that they do melt—planned obsolescence at 200 miles above the Earth.
Thanks to a super-sensitive new tool, NASA can now see exactly where air pollution is increasing and decreasing–down to the level of neighborhoods–and in some cases, the results are surprising.
After years of controversy, Japan’s Sport Council has chosen a new design for an Olympic stadium in Tokyo. It will be be smaller, more sensitive to its surroundings, and (relatively) inexpensive—and it could be a model for other host cities.
Some of the fastest-growing cities in the world sit in high-risk earthquake zones. That’s why researchers are trying to figure out how to build tall buildings using a material that’s not only plentiful and renewable, but even more resistant to earthquakes than conventional building materials.
Tall buildings were the vanguards of the modern world. They completely changed how cities functioned, bringing forth totally new social and urban systems. The reasons they changed cities are surprisingly similar to the reasons they may change the way computer memory is built.
In Hong Kong, finding the space to bury the dead is a huge ongoing problem. New, unconventional projects are springing up to meet demand–giving us a glimpse at the future of burial in the hyper-dense cities.
A few months ago, the European Space Agency and the University of Nottingham described a new project that would use satellites to monitor aging, at-risk piece of infrastructure was at a given moment, right down to the centimeter. Now, more countries want in.
Life aboard a ship in the 18th or 19th century—especially in the far north or south—was treacherous. Now, the records of these brutal voyages are playing a surprising role in scientists’ efforts to understand the future of the planet.
Statistically, the coldest days of the year should be a pretty simple thing to map. So why does this map look so splotchy?
Right now, world leaders in Paris are trying to stop climate change from altering the world inexorably. But for hundreds of thousands of people who live in some low-lying nations, it’s already late in the game.
How do you sew up a seam that hangs 20 feet above your head? You develop your own, industrial-sized needle–like the artist Gabriel Dawe did to finish this installation.
The entire world is watching as politicians pour into Paris today to decide the future of the Earth. But you might have missed what’s going on outside the summit, where dozens of activists and artists have transformed the city with installations about climate change.
Singapore, like almost every other industrialized country, is home to railroads that once formed the bedrock of its modern economy. Nowadays? Not so much.
It’s by design that most modern cities grew up around rivers or coastlines. But today, those bodies of water pose problems for thousands of commuters who’d prefer to ride or walk–and cities are developing new infrastructure to bridge them.
Are you flying through LGA, ATL, or ORD today? It turns out each of these airports has a bizarre and little-known backstory.
You’re aware that your cell service comes from cell towers. And that your mapping app is made possible by GPS satellites. And that wifi signals deliver your fail videos. But the sight of that invisible world is breathtaking.
Gently now. Gently.
Your computer, your gaming console, even your cup of coffee—all of these objects in your house radiate heat, which promptly goes to waste. But what if your kitchen table or console cabinet contained the thermoelectric hardware to turn that heat into usable electricity?
Today, Silicon Valley is a dreamy officescape, a place where ideas and networks are currency. But in the 1960s and 70s, Silicon Valley proper manufactured hardware–and this industrial boom created one of the most polluted places in America.